OSAGE | “My hope in donating these items, is Rob’s love of design and this type of work will carry on in students who find this work fulfilling,” said Linda Lenz.
Lenz made a donation, to the Osage High School Industrial Arts Program, in memory of her late husband, Robert (Rob) Lenz, who passed away in early January 2017. The items donated included a multicolor vinyl printer, a laminator and vinyl, which will be specifically used by students in Osage High School’s Design and Manufacturing Class.
Rob Lenz began as a sign painter, during his high school years, detailing his first race car. He began his hobby through hand painting, and when vinyl was developed, he began using it for his signs. Through the years, Rob’s work began to appear on store fronts, on business vehicles, semis, race cars, fire trucks and in store windows. Some of his signs have appeared on the store fronts in Osage of Kountry Kupboard, Johnson Oil, Adams Plumbing and Heating, Main Street Blossoms and Helena Chemical Company.
“He did the decals on the fleet of the Osage’s Coop Elevator trucks, which was extremely tedious work, and he also did the art work and decals for Chisholm Racing,” Lenz said.
His advertising signs have appeared on many of the vehicles in the Osage Fourth of July parades, at fairs, and at the local rodeo. His work also included the ball field signs, the skate park, and the sports rating signs found in the Osage High School gym.
One of his last projects was a styrofoam Christmas star, with an officer’s badge inserted in it.
“I asked Rob if he could customize a tree topper for our Christmas tree,” Mitchell County Sheriff Greg Beaver said. “It was in December of last year, and after the funeral, Linda and his boys brought it up. It was one of the last things he did.”
Rob, who deeply loved his family, used his talents to make “wedding and graduation banners, wall murals for grandchildren’s bedrooms, and painted granddaughters’ headboards with princesses,” Lenz said. “A tribute to our grandchildren was one of the last Christmas gifts he made for me.”
Brent Jennings, industrial arts instructor at the Osage High School, said the equipment would greatly enhance the department. He pointed out the printer was capable of multi-color printing, where older vinyl printing technology was basically one color printing and to make a multicolored sign each color had to be layered one on top of the other.
“The design and manufacturing class deals with any kind of technology connected to computer-based software,” Jennings said. “Everything is computerized. This printer is capable of printing fall pictures with all the colors.”
Wayne Frost, who is a member of the design class, said, “We will be able to use this printer to make vinyl wraps for cars. It is better than our old printer, because it will make more detailed images. It will be interesting when we get it set up. Lots of other shop classes don’t have the stuff we have.”
“It will give us a bigger variety of things we can do like wrap cars and snowmobiles,” said OHS junior Nathan Huftalin. “We can experiment with it, and we can use it for a wide variety of colors. It’s cool we got it.”
“I will have to learn most of the skills to run the printer myself,” Jennings said, “I appreciate the donation to the school, and we will begin using it when we get it figured out.”